The Birth of a Collateral Line (Daito Ryu)

In 1574, Shingen’s nephew Takeda Kunitsugu moved to the province of Aizu to serve the governor, Ashina Moriuji. Ashina was a faithful ally of the Takeda and gave Kunitsugu some land and a castle. This enabled Kunitsugu to settle in Aizu and to teach martial arts to the aristocrats there. Kunitsugu became the founder of the Aizu Takeda, but due to the defeat of the Takeda decided to change his name to Daito Kyunosuke in memory of Yoshimitsu’s mansion, a small castle named Daito. The Aikijutsu branch founded by Kunitsugu in the sixteenth century is often referred to as the shuryu (main school) because of its growing importance for the Aizu warriors during the Edo period. It still exists today under the name Daito Ryu. This school became also the source of modern Aikido founded in the early twentieth century by Ueshiba Morihei who had studied Daito Ryu with Takeda Sokaku.